Get Up, and Get Moving....

An opportunity for people of serious and orthodox Catholic faith of the Archdiocese of Milwaukee to share the means to improve their own Churches.

Name:
Location: near Milwaukee, Wisconsin, United States

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

By the company they keep.

One of the most intriguing conundrums to an astute observer of the Archdiocese of Milquetoast bureaucracy has to be the just under the surface machinations of the Archdiocese of Milwaukee Supporting Fund.

Now, this seeming legacy that stems from keeping crazy old men on life support long enough to declare their will null, is in the news again.

Like most of the good Weaklandistas, this Weakland era holdover has found the great left-wing bogie man of the new millenium: Halliburton!

With Archbishop Timothy M. Dolan holding one, out of the grand total of three votes (that's consultative for you), this namesake of the local Church is now lead plaintiff in the vast left-wing paranoia about a vast right-wing conspiracy.

Their first lawyers are admitted tools of the Democratic (read as baby-killers) party.
Even other law firms are critical of them. Ain't that the sharks turning on one another.
And look at their winning record: Al Gore in Florida, and Napster.

It all seems just a little too sleazy, from the life support in the 90's to the liberal shilling in this millenia. Why is a Catholic archbishop associated with all of this?

Oh yea, millions of dollars! With that as the context, when "jump" is called I guess the only response to Erica John is an archepiscopal "How high"?

Mike

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Some good advice.

Sorry, holiday week. That means it was pretty slow among the oddball crowd of archdiocesan bureaucracy.

Thanks to Diogenes, I saw great...let me say that again, GREAT...advice for every Catholic bishop, local or otherwise. hehehehe.

Restating an article in the Wall Street Journal:

Last month several dozen top Catholic theologians crowded into a Vatican chapel for 7:30 a.m. mass with Benedict.

The pontiff gave pointed marching orders:"Speaking just to find applause or to tell people what they want to hear ... is like prostitution," he told the theologians, according to a transcript. "Don't look for applause, but look to obey the truth."

Emphasis mine!

Hmmmm? Who could this be directed at??????

Mike

P.S. There are still rumblings on the auxiliary bishop front. (I thought you priests weren't supposed to comment about the backround checks?) I must be careful, would not want my free speaking source to clam up too soon. Just remember fathers, parish councils have mouths too. Is there a surprise on offing? Someone not previously handicapped?

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Clarification, or "Would You Believe It..part 2"

Just so nobody thinks I getting soft, maybe the cynical sentence below should read:

"That picture is a better ad for vocations than anything the archdiocese puts forth on it's website."

Monday, November 20, 2006

Would you believe it....

Five seminarians...
Five white albs (cassocks would be nicer)...
Two (maybe three) bowed in prayer...
One striking his breast in a mea culpa...
And this in the Journal-Sentinal...

It's getting cold out, but I did not think it was that cold.

A better ad for vocations than anything the archdiocese puts forth on it's website. Check out a Video Message from Father Lobacz. Can't you just feel the inspiration to solid young Catholic men? A smile wouldn't hurt would it?

Thanks to the guys who take their vocation seriously.

Mike

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Interesting tidbits.

For those interested, a sober article on the problems with how bishops are chosen, entitled "Choosing Our Shepherds", by Charles Wilson of the St. Joseph's Foundation. I must say that I find this group to be interesting. A good resource for traditional Catholics who feel brushed aside by bishps, but themselves rather populist in their approach to things. I have to think about this one for a while.

As an observation...the Archbishop's New York State of Mind seems to have faded as quickly as it flared up (at least for now). I wonder what the cocktail party chats were in the USCCB meetings?

If it is true that a priest, or priests, are being researched as a possible auxiliary, and that the prospects of immediate cardinalatial needs in NYC and Chicago have passed (and Detroit just got a new auxiliary for Cardinal Maida to break-in) I guess His Excellency might be staying for awhile. But then again, was last week's trip to Baltimore just a dry-run?

Unrelated, but interesting...who is Penitens? Very interesting mix of favorite music and favorite movies.

Tidbits from Sitemeter, the program used to track visits to this website:

WOW, the first, and thus far only, visitor to this little site by someone in Singapore during the same time that President Bush was visiting there. Coincidence? LOL. Even I know better.

Pretty regular visits from someone in Anchorage, AK. Hmmmm...who could that be? Is he looking to take over another Catholic newspaper?

If you want visitors from predominantly Muslim countries, be sure the the words "gay" and "homosexual" are there to be found by search engines. I wonder if those burkhas are covering a too much for too long...what is a randy man supposed to do?

Enough for now...off to mass.

Mike

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Death and Taxes.

Ironic that on All Soul's Day, November 2, 2006, His Excellency, Archbishop Timothy Michael Dolan, included this little tidbit about taxes in a message to his priests. (Thanks to my favorite anonymous contact among the Milwaukee presbyterate...)

3. For the last 18 months, members of my administrative team have been studying the possibility of raising the archdiocesan parish assessment. There is compelling data as to why we should raise the assessment, including the facts that there has not been a change to our formula for close to 30 years, that our assessment is among the lowest in the nation, and because, let’s face it, the cost of doing business continues to rise steadily each year. Part of the process was to have included consultations with important stakeholders this fall.

However, the work of the team analyzing the assessment was stalled as we prepared for the California lawsuits. Once those cases were resolved, we realized that thoughtful, adequate preparation could not be completed in time for the consultations. So, we’ve decided to postpone our consultations on the parish assessment until next fall. That does not mean that we won’t continue work on the issue. Your input, along with that of your key collaborators, such as your business manager, trustees, finance chair, among others, will be helpful to us as we continue to study the issue. I would appreciate it if you would share this information with these folks, but for now, know that the earliest we would do anything with the parish assessment would be for the 2008-2009 fiscal year.

So, the Archbishop is going to raise the "assessment" on his parishes. Make no mistake, this is a TAX. It is a tax that pays for bad liturgy, questionable guidance on religious education, and supports all of the self-proclaimed auxiliary bishops at the soon to be defunct Archbishop Cousins Catholic Center.

Let's unpack this little bomb for a moment....

"...members of my administrative team have been studying the possibility of raising the archdiocesan parish assessment."

Why not tell us who your "administrative team" is? I am guessing that few, if any, have ever worked in a parish, or worked in a real-world setting. (At least not recently.) By real-world, I mean a job where income is directly based on product. Offer something of value to a clientele, and income follows. But, for an "administrative team" it is far easier to be "administrative" when you are not really answerable to anyone.

"...there has not been a change to our formula for close to 30 years."

By "formula" I am assuming that this refers to some sort of manner of determining a percentage, vrs a flat fee rate. Your Excelleny, if your recently smitten finance staff has not exlained this, but it means that your income grows, or does not grow, at the exact same rate as everyone else. Sadly, the implication of your message is that you (or your "administrative team") feels that the central bureaucracy deserves a greater portion than do your parishes. My, aren't we happy with ourselves!

"...our assessment is among the lowest in the nation..."

And the percentage of sex abusers is higher than national average; the size of our priest union is larger than average; the amount of heresy in our parishes is above average. Like good democratic politicians, this assertion presumes that a low rate of taxation is inherently bad.

"...the cost of doing business continues to rise steadily each year."

As do the costs for parishes, and the families who make up those parishes. Even given that, Your Excellency's "administrative team" presumes to have a greater claim on those limited funds than does the parish or the family. "Formula" presumes percentage...therefore your income increases at the same rate as everyone else. A greater increase requires greater justification than presented here.

"...the work of the team analyzing the assessment was stalled as we prepared for the California lawsuits..."

Again, I question who precisely is this "team"? But, as regards to California lawsuits...those pedophile priests are such a bitch. Does your "administrative team" include anyone who facilitated past cover-ups? Or helped hide your predecessors Nantucket trysts? Oh yeah, they deserve pay raises!

"...the earliest we would do anything with the parish assessment would be for the 2008-2009 fiscal year."

So, the presumption is that increased taxation is going to happen. Then why consult?

All in all, I am of the mind that if the Archbishop wants to raise the tax, he should just do it. Stop playing games with fake consultation if the decision is already made.

But, I have great big questions about how anyone at the Archbishop Cousins Catholic Center could justify demanding more money (taken from the resources of our schools and parishes) that would go to a rather useless bureaucracy.

What do all of you say? Does the Cousins Center Coven deserve more money? LOL!

Mike

P.S. Two VERY interesting tidbits from the diocesan offices....

Are possible auxiliary bishops actually being vetted by the Papal Nuncio?

Are those civil, but not sacramental, wedding bells we hear near the archdiocesan offices?

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Poor Richard's Almanac

The Souls of the Just are in the Hand of God...

These words are familiar to anyone who has gone to a Catholic funeral, and now the theme of Bishop Sklba's latest contribution to syncretism in their Catholic Herald.

Umm, your Excellency...one question...

You well describe our celebration a few days ago of All Souls Day as having "a greater focus on those not yet admitted to the full embrace of God because of the traces of sin and selfishness which still mark their lives."

Unable to view anything in the world as uniquely Catholic, you go on to critique Catholic theology through the eyes of non-Catholics. I will concede to the possibility that "We Catholics and Lutherans agreed in the fact that most Christians still require some cleansing of selfishness before being fully and finally embraced by God."

So far, so good. But then there is a rather odd introduction of a:

"discovery" -- that means it was hidden, not central, and of no sufficient import to have previously been noticed,

of a "conjecture" -- which is defined as either an opinion or theory with no evidence, or a mere guess or speculation,

that "may" -- sort of, but not really, if we really want it to, and squeeze alot into it,

take something for which there is "want of a better term" -- especially if you don't really like the meaning of the actual term, with its actual definition, with it actual theology, and its actual implications for living a moral life,

and hopefully (for some) will semantically (that is the aim of dialogue isn't it?) define the original meaning away.

Whew! Those mental gymnastics must hurt if you are not limber enough.

So now the question:

While passingly referring to a consideration of paragraphs 1030-1032 of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, which calls the teaching about "purgatory" (for want of a more squishy term) a "doctrine of faith", and where you failed to mention references in paragraphs 1472, 1475, and 1498, ...

...are you really trying to say either of two things: that there is something "lacking in the sufferings of Christ (it seems to me that Jesus did that whole passion experience pretty completely) and/or that there is really no purgatory to begin with?

While you might find these wanderings to be "fanscinating", some of us might find them worrisome. You might find them "practical", but it seems that practical is just a byword for reductionism, avoidance, or even giving up Catholic theology so that we can all be Lutherans.

Your Excellency, please, next time, just nail your column to the door of Weakland's Cathedral.

Mike

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Who is saying "Oh S**t"?

On gay marriage...Fr. Bryan Massingale, and all the Alliance gay rights (gay lifestyle) suppprters...."Oh s**t.!"

On the governor and the AG; Charlie Sykes.
On the House of Representatives; no one really, we expected it.

Overall, Me? ...oh, s**t!

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Hope, More Hope, and then, the Hopeless.

The Gay-Marriage Amendment (and don't let anyone tell that it is about anything but gay marriage) debate continues on and the Catholic Church, and it's priests are right at the center of it all. I have two links that you should share with as many people as possible.

First, the Hope. Archbishop Dolan's "Herald of Hope" column from this past week.

Unlike many of the pastors in the pulpits this weekend, the bishops were unequivocal: Simply put, we bishops of Wisconsin have encouraged you to vote YES on the marriage amendment and NO on the death penalty referendum.

And now, More Hope. A friend share with me a link to the homily being given this weekend by what seems to be a promising young priest. Fr. Nathan Reesman has entitled simply "Election Homily".

Like the words of the Archbishop, I suggest that you share the words of Fr. Reedman far and wide. But more fundamentally, I urge you all to be fighters in the culture war in which we find ourselves. St. John the Baptist died to defend the marriage bond.

Now the Hopeless: the Alliance priests are going to be at it full force this weekend. Regular reader "MF" wrote an e-mail to a number of priests in the Alliance. For your edification, should you want those e-amil addresses to send messages to the renegade priests, the leadership of the Alliance is:

Dave Cooper, Chair, dcooper@stmatthias-milw.org
Bill Burkert, Co-chair, frbill@stromans.com
Dick Aiken, Secretary-Treasurer raiken@saintsebs.org
Steve Avella lisieux@att.net
Mike Barrett barrettm@archmil.org
Ken Mich michk@archmil.org
Philip Reifenberg reifenberg@archmil.org
Dick Schlenker richschlenker@netzeor.net

I would love to read ony responses that you might get.

To MF, Fr. Dave Cooper wrote back more about the war in Iraq than about the impact of gay lifestyles, and speaks of Fr. Massingale's ramblings as a "masterpiece of theology." Fr. Ken Mich seems to set up a juxtaposition between the Catechism and his own beliefs.

Let me know what responses you get.

Mike

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

A Tale of Two Sees.

Wow, I have caused my biggest argument to date. On one side, the Church's point of view which, if I do say so myself, is generally cogent and coherent. On the other side: vitriol, multiple straw men, and disingenuous avoidance of underlying questions.

The argument itself pulls back the veil on so many issues. Like episcopal leadership styles.


Thanks to Terrance we learn...

Milwaukee -- Madison
Cities separated by 80 miles.
Bishops separated by a multitude of vertebrae.

How one diocesan bishop keeps the issues clear, and his priests on message.

And in Milwaukee.....hmmm, things are eerily, and scarily quiet when it comes to the Archbishop correcting his wayward priests.

Mike